Identity Document Scams

On-line scammers use a variety of methods to attempt to gain the trust of people, preying on financial or emotional vulnerabilities.

Identity documents, usually passports, may be used to 'confirm' the identity of the fraudsters and strengthen the credibility of the identity and the story being used.   

We have been involved in a number of cases where scans of passports are expediently assessed to confirm whether or not they are representative of a genuine passport.   These examinations are completed for legal proceedings, or to assist either a potential victim or a family member of the victim who suspects that a relative is being defrauded.  

Although not an original document, a scan of passport biographical data page (the photo page) does reveal considerable information.  We use our vast knowledge of passport production methods and the security features that are incorporated to determine whether the evidence supports that the passport is genuine.  In many cases, our results confirm the suspicions about the passport and assist in disrupting the trust that is being developed.  

These scams are international, with little recourse when the fraud is detected.  Our results have, on occasions, halted a significant financial loss from occurring.     

Where scanned identity documents are provided to support a story, there are options to validate their genuineness.  This does not have to be a time-consuming process as we may be able to assist.  

A recent Australian government report on identity crime (2016) can be accessed by clicking here.        

Click on the image to enlarge. Some of the information has been privatised as it may reflect an innocent person.  Even though a low quality image, this scan can be easily shown to be fraudulent.